Thursday, July 25, 2013

Front Beast-Demon Ways of Sorcery

Hells Headbangers

Given the long-running nature of Front Beast (1999-now) it would probably be a somewhat odd thing to discover that this is only the second full-length release from this German band. Of course there has been quite the huge lot of demos, splits and EPs (and a couple of compilation albums to boot!) so it's not like Front Beast has been asleep at the wheel or anything. Formed back in 1999, and calling Ober-Flörsheim, Rhineland-Palatinateto home-base, it should probably be noted that Front Beast is also a one-man project. The man behind this latest album of old-school black metal is the one and only veteran Avenger (aka Daniel Cichos) who sure seems to keep himself busy! There would be way to much to list (as far as his past and present contributions) so if you're at all interested just head here: where you'll discover that this guy must never sleep! Avenger is one hard-working individual  and he's no slouch when it comes to handling everything from lead vocals to guitar, bass and drum work. On "Demon Ways of Sorcery" Avenger draws from black metal's past musically while lyrically it's all one big satanic love-in. If it wasn't for the one dimensional nature of  these lyrics ("Bearer of Satan's Flame" really?) I'd give Front Beast's second full-length LP higher marks, but it does drag things down somewhat. Still, that's the approach that Avenger has taken so who am I to argue? As black metal is more though then just a lyrical undertaking, unless we were dealing with spoken-word black metal (if that even exists?), the music here helps smooth over any rough edges theme wise. Avenger keeps things flowing by way of his aggressive vocals and his ability to make raw, no-frills metal sound inviting and relevant. That right there is Front Beast's strongest selling point as simplistic black metal can, and is here, be a popular alternative to the overly extreme music that is swallowing up the scene. Ultimately "Demon Ways of Sorcery" gives off this underground metal feeling where you could easily imagine Front Beast playing in the ruins of some old, long abandoned church and it's that vibe (of something old, dark and creepy) that saves this album.

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